October is national Breast Cancer Awareness month. Breast cancer is the most common cancer among women in the United States (except for skin cancers). Most doctors believe that early detection tests for breast cancer save thousands of lives each year, and that many more lives could be saved if more women and their health care providers took advantage of these tests.
Let’s take a look at three breakthrough technologies that are helping to fight breast cancer.
Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute scientist Deborah Kelly has developed a new set of tools to help doctors view cancer cells at an unprecedented resolution.
Kelly and her team developed the microchip-based toolkit to examine the genetic material contained within the breast cancer cells. They prepped the genetic material and applied it to microchips coated with antibodies raised against the BRCA1 protein. The antibodies recruited the BRCA1 protein assemblies that were tethered to the microchip surface. This allowed researchers to get a closer look at the nature of the protein interactions.
Doctors at St. Vincent Carmel Women’s Center in Indiana are using two new technologies to help fight breast cancer.
The first is called radioactive seed localization. It helps doctors easily locate where cancer is within the breast tissue and improves clinical outcomes and the patient experience.
The second piece of new technology is called The MarginProbe. It’s the first and only FDA-approved technology that allows for real-time analysis of the outer layer of cells of the tumor once it’s removed.
New ultrasound technology developed in Detroit can potentially detect breast cancers masked by dense breast tissue more accurately and comfortably than conventional ultrasound and mammogram.
Instead of compressing the breast between two plates and manipulating it to various viewing angles, the SoftVue technology has the patient lie on a table with the breast submerged in warm water. It takes less than two minutes to scan and never touches the patient.
What did we miss? Share links to your favorite innovative finds in the comment section below and don’t forget to check out last week’s Innovation Friday.
Disclosure: Lexmark is not endorsing any products or features shared in this Innovation Friday blog post. It’s just stuff we think is really, really cool and innovative.